Maori Folk Tales of the Port Hills

This little book, published in 1923 by James Cowan, is a collection of material given to him by Hone Taare Tikao (sic) (Hōne Tāre Tikao).  It has a lot of stuff about Whakaroupo, Rapaki and the harbour basin from pre European contact.

I’d like to digitise it and make oit available as a wee personal project, and I’m going to blog about the process.  I can see there are a number of issues I’m going to need to work through.

The law.  This is has been published in 123, and the author died in 1943.  As far as I’m aware this puts the book in the public domain, but I’ll run that past a real legal person.

Permission.  I’ll need to get permission from the University of Canterbury Library to use their copy of the work, and to use their book scanning equipment.  I suspect if I have all the other things sorted.

I’ll also need to get permission from the local Iwi, Ngāi Tahu, to reproduce Tikao’s image (which is in the book) and reproduce the stories that are in it.  Though I reckon the words themselves are unemcumbered by law, but the stories belong to the land, and the people of it.  I’m going to talk to some people at the national Library about ways of approaching this, and I hope to talk to people at the Rapaki Marae.

The goal is to produce the text to put into various repositories, and make it as available as appropriate.

Even the tiny amount of work I’ve done so far shows me that the author and the narrator were fascinating men.  Hopefully this wee project will help people study them further.

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